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VINTAGRAPH • WPA • WWII • TAKE A KODAK, c. 1930s

Sunday Brunch: 1975

Sunday Brunch: 1975

Family, food and fashions of the 1970s, as demonstrated by my sister-in-law, my father, mother and me on a Sunday morning in January, 1975, captured by my brother on Kodachrome. Once again, sis-in-law wins the arresting garb sweepstakes. Love that hat. I was quite fond my shirt, too. This week in San Francisco, I spotted two young women with glasses exactly like my father's.

We're gathered in front of the late, lamented 464 Magnolia Restaurant in, you guessed it, Larkspur, California. Through the 1950s, the building was the local telephone exchange. Adjoining buildings housed the hardware store, pharmacy and dry goods emporium. Today they've all been consolidated into an upscale café, coffee house, deli and patisserie complex. The rest of the old everyday establishments have long given way to other fancy eateries, boutiques, art galleries and management offices. The main link to my childhood in downtown Larkspur is the barber shop, which still has the very barber chairs I squirmed in while getting shorn. Fortunately, the local historical preservation ordinance has prevented all exterior changes except for paint color, so the town still looks relatively unchanged. View full size.

Still there

While walking through downtown Larkspur last Sunday I realized I was passing the locale of this photo of tterrace with his family. I didn't have the original Shorpy posting with me but snapped this comparison view from memory using my iPhone.

Perspective isn't perfect, but close. Biggest change to the bistro is the addition of sidewalk tables.

(I believe the lady patron in the window was giving me what's called "stink eye" in Hawaii.)

The 70s

Love your parents, tterrace. Your dad, especially, appeared confident and self assured. I'll bet he was a marvelous person. Was Mom a teacher? Just by appearances alone, I think she could have been.

The whole group appears to me to be happy to be there.

Dad Letterman

The lettering in the window -- I'm so glad you mentioned that! My dad was an "old sign man," as he put it. He started as a child and did it for 70 years. One of the things I love about Shorpy are the examples of old-school hand lettering and gold leafing that would have my dad talking for hours about how it was done. He would salivate over this site for a myriad of reasons, but none so much as the wonderful signs!

The year I was born!

Oh, I so want your mom's glasses, your SIL's sweater, and her hat (but in a different color)! However, it seems that pants were all generally ill-fitting back then. As another poster mentioned, you're way cuter without the 'stache.

Time machine.

Having driven by this section of Larkspur my entire life, I was startled to see this image. Not so much the people, but that small section of town with that window and the lettering. I must have seen it subconsciously hundreds of times without actually seeing it.

Hey TT, remember the slot car place just down the street? And how about the Chinese restaurant across from it?

Oh, and did you guys walk down all those stairs to work up your appetite for breakfast?

Specs

Forget your dad's glasses. Let's talk about your mom's! Cute! I'll take her purse, too, while we're at it.

The lettering in the window

tterrace-Thats a great shot. I love the casual stroke letter style of the window sign. As an old school sign painter, I can remember when a man and a brush were the norm.

Now days, all you get are vinyl stick on letters....echhh!

And yes, I dig the shirt!

Love it

I love this shot. I've saved it as a great example of how Kodachrome could capture natural color that seems beyond the capability of even the best digital camera. You can just walk into this picture. And as for subject matter, although posed, wow, this just says so much. Each expression and pose is just perfect and definitely captures a moment.

Not to gush, but --

I really like this picture of you the best. You are very handsome clean shaven!

Some have it, some don't

I'm talking about the undefinable characteristic of being photogenic. It seems ALL the people in the tterrace collection of photos look great and natural in all of their pictures. In my family, trying to photograph more than one person at a time never produces accurate results. There is always someone with one or both eyes shut, the open one is usually bright red or "children of the corn" - ish, somebody's top lip is likely stuck to their teeth or their mouth is hanging open with all three chins drooping (more chins than the Hong Kong phonebook) or some other detrimental portrayal that spoils the photo such as a crying or angry child or a distracted elderly subject or any number of flawed expressions that are anything but flattering. In this photo, every single one of you can use his picture to make a pleasing solo headshot or passport or resume' photo, and I suspect that "taking a good picture" is inherent in your genes, a gene which is sorely lacking in my circle. This one is a beauty of everyone, there's a morning chill in the air and you must have already eaten since everyone seems satisfied and content. Hope you know how lucky ya'all are (I think you do). Great pic, very nostalgic, thanks t.

That's Carly's Hat

Whenever I see a hat like your sis-in-law's wearing, especially from that decade, all I can think of is the iconic image from Carly Simon's No Secret LP.

On the other hand

This could be taken this morning and, around here at least, no one would be any wiser.

Fashion tends to go in circles. We may be stuck at 320 degrees on that circle but your garb, jacket, coat and the "I just got back from Hawaii" shirt are most appropriate for this morning's trek to the Vic Inn: it's 22 here and we won't discuss wind chill.

It's ...

Mom totally looks like Michael Palin.

Proposed

A traveling exhibit titled "A Photographic Stroll with tterrace and Friends," each section showing an aspect of the life and times.

Isn't that "special"

So that was the beginning of the "Church Lady" --
great photo in so many ways!

Mom and Dad

You and your sister-in-law are looking at the camera, maybe thinking about what you look like. Mom and Dad are looking at your brother, and their faces say more than any words can.

I love you Shorpy

And the shirt really IS awesome!

Fashionable frames

The girls in San Francisco may like those black plastic frames, but I'd take your mom's silvery cat-eyes any day. If they're embellished with rhinestones, even better.

Different Strokes

First thing I noticed was your mom's lovely coat. It makes the rest of you look a little under-dressed for the occasion but totally appropriate for your age at that time.

464 Magnolia

>the late, lamented 464 Magnolia Restaurant<

For sure. I well remember brunches there with the skylight streaming light in and a harpist playing in the corner, plus of course the great food.

Comfortable In Their Surroundings

Tterrace, I see that your mother and father were entirely at ease being seen with the younger generation's concept of style. That would be a skill only very nice people could have acquired.

Tint Camp

Looks like one of those hand-tinted photos from the turn of the (previous) century.

Ah, yes, January 1975

I was going to language school in Monterey. What a magical time. Graduated in August 1975, didn't return until July 1995. Been back in Monterey ever since.

Where's the mustache?

What happened? You lose a bet or was this during the pre-stache days? And that shirt, I bet you wore that on a dare!

Comfy clothes

For me I remember the clothes being inexpensive and comfortable in '75 , but I always had uncomfortable shoes it seems.

 
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